Agriculture Secretary Vilsack Announces Support to Improve Electric Infrastructure and Services in Rural Communities

Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack today announced that rural communities in 21 states will benefit from guaranteed loans provided by USDA to improve electric service delivery to more than 33,000 customers. “The Obama Administration believes that modernized infrastructure is a necessary part of the foundation for long term economic stability and prosperity in rural America and this funding will help rural utilities build and upgrade essential electric infrastructure to help communities thrive,” Vilsack said. “These investments will improve local service, create jobs and expand economic opportunity in rural areas.”The funding is being provided by the Rural Utilities Service electric program at USDA Rural Development. The loans will help build more than 2,405 miles of new distribution lines and upgrade more than 1,822 miles of existing distribution lines. These investments are part of the Obama Administration’s commitment to bring improved infrastructure to rural communities.

The loan guarantees announced total $364.3 million and are part of USDA Rural Development’s annual budget; they are not funded through the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009. For more information on USDA’s electric program, please visit the following USDA website: www.usda.gov/rus/electric/index.htm.

Below is the complete list of rural utilities selected to receive a USDA guaranteed loan. Funding of each loan recipient is contingent upon the recipient meeting the conditions of the loan agreement.

Alabama
Clarke-Washington Electric Membership Corporation – $15,992,000 loan to serve 2,240 new
customers, build 114 miles of new distribution lines, and make improvements to 34 miles of
distribution lines.

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